Community College Summit: Part 2
Concurrent Session 5
Join us for this second session of three sessions at OLC’s Community College Summit, where we bring together educators and advocates of community colleges. This session will focus on creating and implementing online, blended and digital learning innovations within community colleges that can be sustained over time. Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) Online will highlight its virtual student union as an exemplar innovative practice. The NOVA Virtual Student Union (VSU) is a digital hub for students to connect with the college and each other without physically being on campus. When the COVID-19 Pandemic hit, Student Life college-wide rallied to migrate all Student Life resources into the online campus’ portal, scaling up consistent support to its 75,000 students. This success and opportunity to engage diverse students across the college community will now be extended beyond the pandemic. Throughout this engagement hub, students have access to participate in Student Life activities, join discussion forums and connect with many educational resources, all online.
Powered by the Office of Student Life's vision to engage all students beyond the classroom, Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) seamlessly responded to the COVID-19 Pandemic in preserving Student Life programming through its Virtual Student Union (VSU). The VSU is housed within the college learning management system, Canvas, and is strategically placed to meet students where they are at. Throughout the semester, NOVA Student Life staff across six campuses collaborated with NOVA Online Student Services to host student-led discussion boards, asynchronous and synchronous programming, and cross-departmental collaborations. The VSU is a driving mechanism to inspire students to become active members of the campus and community. The platform connects NOVA's diverse student body to foster meaningful interactions and maintains space and resources for students in a virtual setting. The VSU amplifies efforts of the Office of Student Life to provide access to initiatives that enrich College culture, engage student leaders to discover new knowledge that enables them to critically evaluate evidence, make informed judgments, balance multiple perspectives and act ethically, and expand opportunities for experimental learning, civic engagement, cultural enrichment, leadership development, recreation and service-learning. These initiatives will continue post-Pandemic based on NOVA’s success during the remote shift and how it has drawn in more diverse students seeking connection and support. Learn what we’ve experienced and where we are thinking of heading.